In a discussion on 1 Corinthians the topic of gifts was being explored. Most people felt that prayer isn’t a sprirtual gift. But most people don’t pray much and have difficulty praying. There are a few who have no difficulty and pray a lot for others. Would you consider this to be in one of the categories of spiritual gifts or just something that some people have any easier time with, like Bible reading?
17 Responses to “Is Prayer a Spiritual Gift?”
- 1 Gary Zimmerli
Jeff, it’s a great question! Is prayer on any list of spiritual gifts? I look at it this way: since it is so hard for so many of us to pray (we don’t even know how we should pray), and since our salvation is wholly a work of God, I think anybody who can pray (whether publicly or privately) can only pray honestly and properly through the working of the Holy Spirit within that person. In that way, it could be said that it is a spiritual gift.
- 2 roger mugs
i think there are those gifted to do it more than others – sure. But in general i dont know that I’d call it a gift any more than reading the bible is a gift. We’re all supposed to do them both and they become easier with practice… i think…i dunno.. this isn’t particular well thought out.
- 3 Iris
Prayer, especially Intercessory Prayer, is often thought of and taught as a “spiritual gift” or “gifting.” However, no where in Scripture is this concept supported. Talking with our Lord is neither hard nor difficult — as the brother is correct who quotes the fact that the Lord knew we could not do it right — so He does it for us. When we participate, it is simply enjoy Him and thinking with Him. We make it too hard and make a big deal out of it, when it is one of those “already done’s” you Calvinist are so good at understanding. Just join and enjoy.
- 4 Scripture Zealot
Thanks for the comments. I usually keep it to myself, but praying has always been easy for me. I don’t have any advice for people who have difficulty with it.
So I was wondering what it might be classified as. As Gary said, it’s still wholly a work of God of course and there are a multitude of weaknesses.
After writing the post and reading your comments I was reminded of Colossians 4:2 which is for everyone.
- 5 tc robinson
In all the lists of spiritual gifts, prayer is never mentioned as a spiritual gift. Everyone can and ought to pray.
The believer already has the Holy Spirit as a prayer partner, no special fit needed (Rom 8:26).
- 6 Deodath
I had difficulties in praying….but very active in reading the Bible. I decided to pray and ask Jesus to give me the power to make prayers…..I see that there is a big improvement on my side!…..so whether it is a gift or not the only thing i know is that if you pray for it you will be granted as we can not do anything without Him (Jn.15:5)
- 7 Scripture Zealot
Good point Deodath. We often forget to pray for things we would like to improve on that are things that God would like us to do in the first place.
- 8 Andy Anderson
“Jesus’ disciples had undoubtedly logged many hours in prayer by the time this exchange occurred. But after watching Jesus pray, they were keenly aware that something was different about the way He prayed. There was such a stark contrast that asking specific questions in an attempt to fine–tune their skills wasn’t adequate. They needed a complete overhaul. So they said to Him, “Teach us to pray.” In other words, “Let’s start from the very beginning.”
Jesus’ response is somewhat surprising. The typical response to such a question today is, “It’s easy. Prayer is just talking to God.” Or you might hear someone say, “You don’t learn to pray. You just pray. No one can teach another person to pray. It must come from the heart.”
Jesus didn’t trivialize their question. He took it seriously. His answer gives us the impression that He was waiting for them to ask. It was a lesson He had been looking forward to teaching for some time. And much to our surprise, He began by giving them the exact words to say, “When you pray, say …”
Stanley, C. F. (1996). The glorious journey. Nashville, Tenn.: T. Nelson Publishers.
- 9 Scripture Zealot
Nice quote Andy. That makes me think.
- 10 Andy Anderson
You’re welcome Jeff 🙂
- 11 Allan Walker
It’s hurts. Our church had a dispute about this and it looks like some members may end up leaving the church.
One believes that prayer is a spiritual gift
and the other doesn’t believe it because there is no scripture to back it up.
I believe that intercessory prayer is a gift because it takes a special impartation from God and all gifts are imparted from God. And that person can stand in the gap for others that are weaker and unsaved that don’t even know how to pray even as Jesus tought how to pray.
Prayer in general I believe is our comunication with God and must be developed and is enhanced through our devotion and relationship to Christ.
Someone email me if you can support general prayer as being a gift with scripture verses please!
- 12 Jai
Blessings to all. From what i gather, praying has to be a spiritual gift. Praying to God is about a relationship with him and we are encourage to speak as talking regularly to a friend. This is true however when interceding on behalf of others or just praying with someone we must understand 2 things:1. Prayer is about speech. Which not many have the wisdom of wording that persuades or converts. 2. These words should be from the Holy Spirit which gives us that gift of speaking. What makes someone feel the power of Christ in a prayer just as they can see the power of Christ when someone teaches them from the Bible? (remember teaching is a gift according to the Bible). Praying is a gift given us by the Father in which can be used to minister to others and from experience used to turn hearts to Jesus.
- 13 Scripture Zealot
Thanks for the comment and stopping by.
- 14 britney
Hey guys, so I’ve always had a pretty good prayer life, bit i do think some people are stronger in it than others. God listens to all, not disputing that and prayer is so very powerful and is a gift from God that we can communicate with him. But, I remember when I prayed for two agnostic friends,there was always this doubt that it wldnt happen almost so i didnt have to give my hopes up, but then I realized, this is God! He brought the Israelities out of Egypt, he defied death, he created the Universe, he defied laws of nature nothing is impossible for him! I prayed for my friends leaving all doubt behind and just trusting his will for them, and within a matter of weeks they came to my church and both are baptized! It’s so amazing.
There’s a term called “Prayer Warrior”-people dedicated to prayer, and experience spirutial warfare (although it’s all around us) and seem to experience it first hand (not saying others dont at all). We all pray, we are on spiritually attacked to some degree, and am not discrediting anyone or minimizing what anyone’s going through. The Bible does say that to some God gives the gift of faith. And maybe, with that comes the whole gift of prayer. I do believe that some people are more intuned with prayer than others depending on your personal relationship with Jesus Christ. my personal opinion is that prayer is a spiritual gift, (my opinion guys, not saying im right) but none the less, anyone can pray. And God hears all and answers all maybe not when we expect, but it’s all abouthis will. Either way guys, agree, disagree, love eachother, and don’t get too caught up in the issue. We’re all Christians here, and serve the same God. Blessings to everyone
- 15 tom woods
There have been times when i felt compelled by the spirit to pray for someone specifically and with them. I have to wait sometimes but when it happens i have to do it. There have been times when i have been moved by the spirit to lay hands on people for a specific need and name it in prayer. When this first started happening I was very unsure of myself especially naming specific things i was led to pray for. Whether this is a spiritual gift in and of itself i cant say but it is definitely a part of other gifts named in scripture. Discernment of spirits comes to mind, also the fruits of the spirit, peace love joy compassion and so forth. The point is that when the holy spirit leads us to pray in the name of Jesus care is the first thing and meditation is at the forefront of any spiritual endeavor. It must be done in line with Gods will and the prompting of the spirit must be carefully listened to and done in all the fruits of the spirit to the edification of the one prayed for in the glory of God and not the person praying. In this light I do think it is a spiritual gift. Remember the examples of intercessory prayer like eph 3:14 where paul prayed specifically for the needs of the church in ephassus(sorry dont know how to spell that) but the point is that paul was led to pray for them by the holy spirit. I know that is a short and a bit incomplete answer but i hope the point came across. Hugs in the name of Jesus and that all will be made clear through the holy spirit in you .
- 16 Scripture Zealot
Thank you for your reply tom. I see what you’re saying. What I’m referring to is just plain ability to pray a lot and loving doing it. It seems that so many people have trouble with praying and it’s never been a problem for me. I don’t understand why it is for others, but then I have loads of weaknesses too, and my praying isn’t anything like some people’s.
What you’re speaking about may be discernment with intercession. (Oops, I re-read and saw that you said that. Godly minds think alike?) I don’t suppose all of God’s gifts have to be exactly the ones named in Scripture, although they should certainly be along those lines.
I do feel that God has given me insight into what to pray for people, but it’s always people I know and for something that I can see in them or something along the lines of things they may have said. We need to pay attention, but the Spirit can help us be sensitive to those things. I’m probably not as bold as you to come right out and do it if it’s a more immediate need. I admire you for that. Many of the things I pray about often take weeks, months or years to come to fruition. I don’t mind praying over and over because it’s worth it if it comes about and praying according to God’s will usually does for another believer.
I better stop. Thanks again for commenting.
- 17 David
02/06/2013 I remember right after I got saved in April of 1978 I started getting called on to pray. I was a nervous wreck. In fact I would get sick at my stomach if I even thought someone was going to call on me to pray. I never refused & I never told anyone to please not call on me to pray. I can just imagine what people thought when I prayed but it never stopped them from calling on me. One day I prayed to God & told Him that if He would honor my prayers, I would never refuse to pray when called on & I would hope to honor Him with all my prayers. For 34 years I have kept that promise & love to pray in secret & outloud. I truly believe in intercesserory prayer. I always considered it a gift from God & one of my spiritual gifts. Am I wrong? Maybe
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Yeshua, my Lord and Savior, I praise Your Holy name, for You are worthy. Oh so worthy of all the worship, honor, glory and love.
Father, please cleanse my heart and renew my mind, as I pour out my soul unto You. Bless me with spiritual gifts, Lord, so I can use them to help Your people, if that be Your will.
1 Corinthians 12:8-10 For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom. And to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit. Yet to another faith by the same Spirit, and to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit. To another is given the working of miracles. And to another prophecy. To another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues and to another the interpretation of tongues:
Bless me with your spiritual gifts
Give me a discerning spirit, Oh Lord. Bless me with the word of knowledge. Allow me extraordinary faith for healing, and working miracles all for the glory of You.
Give me the strength and wisdom to use them wisely. Lead me and guide me as I use these gifts appropriately.
Romans 11:29 For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.
2 Timothy 1:6 Wherefore I put thee in remembrance that thou stir up the gift of God, which is in thee by the putting on of my hands.
Give me peace and love
Draw near Lord and as Your people witness Your great works, they will glorify You. Reach out and touch the lives of many. Use me, Oh Lord, to fulfill Your will.
Grant me love in my heart and peace in my soul as I spread Your word across the land. In Jesus’ mighty name I pray, bless me with those spiritual gifts, Amen and Amen.
James 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.
Chris Tomlin – I Lift My Hands
A Prayer for Using Your Spiritual Gifts
By Greg Laurie
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. – John 14:26
Have you ever watched a fire begin to burn down to the point that all you have left are coals? It looks as though there is no fire actually left, because the coals may be under a layer of ash. You can’t really see much. But when you take a fresh log and toss it on top of those coals and stir it around a bit, suddenly it ignites, and you have a whole new fire going.
Paul wrote to Timothy, “Stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands” (2 Timothy 1:6). That phrase stir up the gift means to fan it into full flame.
There may be live coals in your life, but you have allowed the fire to go down. You haven’t been using the gifts that God has given you, the talents He has given you. It’s time to fan them into full flame again. It’s time to be reignited. It’s time to say, “Lord, how can I use what You have given me for Your glory until You return?”
We need to take advantage of the opportunities that are out there. There are those who want to have the big, visible ministries. They want the applause of men. But if we will humble ourselves and take what we have and offer it to God, if we are willing to do what He has set before us and be faithful in the little things, then He will give us something better than visible ministries or applause – He’ll give us the peace and joy that comes from pleasing Him.
Any time you take a chance, you can fail. But it’s better to try than to never have anything happen in your life. I would rather try and fail than never try at all.
Heavenly Lord, do not let us neglect Your Spirit or the gifts You have given us. Give us courage to use these gifts and the humility to not use them for our glory, but for You and Your glory. Help us see the good work You have ready for us and embrace that work with willingness and joy. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Editor’s Note: The following is an abridged version of Fan the Flame by Greg Laurie. To read the full devotional, please follow this link.
Prayer Warrior: A Spiritual Gift Definition
The Bible’s Prayer Warrior spiritual gift. God wants every Christians to pray. However, this gift given by the Holy Spirit, transforms the Christian into a “Prayer Warrior”. To this end, Prayer Warriors intercede before God for the welfare of other people and ministries. So, how did “Prayer Warriors” earn this label when it does not appear in the Bible? Biblical teachings on prayer depict some forms of prayer as “standing in the gap” in war between good and evil. Sadly, this spiritual gift is often overlooked by the Church. This is because the Prayer Warrior gift is seldom used in public. However, without Prayer Warriors, many visible ministry accomplishments would likely not succeed.
Bible examples – Colossians 4:12-13, “Epaphras….is always wrestling in prayer for you….”. Again, Colossians 1:9, “For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you….” And finally, in 1 Timothy 2:1 the Apostle Paul states, “I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone….”
Register today for our Spiritual Gifts Test. The GraceGifts spiritual gifts assessment filters ministry gifts through personality dynamics called gift expressions.